Signup to receive the Early Edition in your inbox here.

A curated weekday guide to major news and developments over the weekend. Here’s today’s news


 Russia has charged four men it says attacked a Moscow concert hall on Friday and killed at least 137 people. All four appear to have been beaten and were charged with committing an act of terrorism. The self-styled Islamic State militant group (IS) has claimed responsibility for the attack and posted video evidence, which the BBC has verified as genuine. Russian officials have claimed, without evidence, that Ukraine was involved, an allegation Kyiv says is “absurd.” Graeme Baker reports for BBC News.

 France today joined the United States in saying intelligence indicated the IS was responsible for the attack, while Russia continued to suggest that Ukraine was to blame. “The information available to us … as well as to our main partners, indicates indeed that it was an entity of the Islamic State which instigated this attack,” French President Emmanuel Macron told reporters. Russian President Vladimir Putin has not publicly mentioned the militant group in connection with the attackers, who he said had been trying to escape to Ukraine. A Kremlin spokesperson earlier called into question U.S. assertions that the IS was behind the attack, saying the United States was evoking the group to cover its “wards” in Kyiv. Reuters reports. 


 Israeli forces have surrounded two more hospitals in Gaza, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society said yesterday. The organization said that the Al-Amal Hospital and Nasser Hospital in southern Gaza were both encircled, adding, “All our teams are in extreme danger at the moment and are unable to move at all.” Meanwhile, the Israeli military is still operating at Al-Shifa Hospital after raiding it last week. In an update yesterday, the military said its troops had “apprehended approximately 480 terrorists affiliated with the Hamas and Islamic Jihad terrorist organizations, and have located weapons and terrorist infrastructure in the hospital.” Lauren Izso, Abeer Salman, and Tim Lister report for CNN.

 Two of Israel’s three war cabinet members expressed their opposition to government proposals on the recruitment of ultra-Orthodox men into the military, setting up a potential collapse of Israel’s government coalition. The Israeli Supreme Court had given the government until the end of this month to justify the lack of legislation regarding the conscription of the ultra-Orthodox, known is Hebrew as “Haredim,” and explain why the government continues to fund Haredi religious schools while exempting young Haredi men from military service. Mick Krever and Lauren Izso report for CNN.

 The head of the U.N. Palestinian refugee agency (UNRWA) yesterday said that Israel had informed the U.N. it will no longer approve UNRWA food convoys to northern Gaza. “This is outrageous and makes it intentional to obstruct lifesaving assistance during a man-made famine. These restrictions must be lifted,” Philippe Lazzarini said on X. Both the UNRWA and Egypt said last week that Lazzarini, who was visiting Cairo, was denied entry to Gaza by Israeli authorities. “By preventing UNRWA to fulfill its mandate in Gaza, the clock will tick faster towards famine & many more will die of hunger, dehydration + lack of shelter,” Lazzarini added. Reuters reports. 


 Vice President Kamala Harris suggested there could be “consequences” for Israel if it proceeds with a planned invasion of Rafah, where some 1.4 million people are sheltering. “We have been clear in multiple conversations and in every way that any major military operation in Rafah would be a huge mistake,” Harris said yesterday on ABC News, adding, “Let me tell you something: I have studied the maps. There’s nowhere for those folks to go.” When pressed on whether the United States would consider “consequences” if the Rafah plans proceeded, Harris said, “I am ruling out nothing.” 

 Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant headed to Washington yesterday amid increasingly strained relations with the Biden administration. Gallant is set to meet with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, national security adviser Jake Sullivan, and other senior officials, the Israeli government said in a statement. Gallant’s visit, which the Israeli government said was at Austin’s invitation, follows Blinken and Israeli leaders confronting one another over the trajectory of the war on Friday. Rachel Pannett, Annabelle Timist, and Sarah Dadouch report for the Washington Post. 


Riot police fired tear gas to push back hundreds of Jordanian demonstrators marching on the Israeli embassy in Amman yesterday to protest Israel’s military operation in and around hospitals in Gaza and the mounting civilian death toll. The Israeli embassy, where protesters gather daily, has long been a flashpoint of anti-Israel protests at times of crisis in Gaza and the Palestinian territories. Suleiman Al-Khalidi reports for The Times of Israel.


 North Korea said today that Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida offered to meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un “as soon as possible,” but stressed that prospects for such a meeting would depend on Tokyo tolerating Pyongyang’s weapons program and ignoring its past abductions of Japanese nationals. Japan acknowledged it has been trying to arrange a bilateral summit but said North Korea’s preconditions for it were “unacceptable,” dimming the likelihood that a Kishida-Kim meeting will happen soon. Hyung-Jin Kim and Kim Tong-Hyung report for AP News.

 A senior North Korean official leading a delegation to China met with Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi on Saturday and called for a strengthening of bilateral ties, North Korea’s state media agency KCNA said today. According to KCNA, Wang expressed that the strengthening of relations would “unshakably advance” under Chinese President Xi Jinping and Kim Jong Un. Reuters reports. 

 The United States and Japan are planning the biggest upgrade to their security alliance since the signing of a mutual defense treaty in 1960 in a move to counter China. President Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida will announce plans to restructure the U.S. military command in Japan to bolster bilateral operational planning and exercises, according to five people familiar with the situation. The two leaders will unveil the plan when Biden hosts Kishida at the White House on April 10. Demetri Sevastapulo and Kana Inagaki report for the Financial Times.

 Nigerian students taken by gunmen in a mass abduction in the north-western town of Kuriga earlier this month have been freed “unharmed,” officials say. The school authorities had said more than 280 children were taken, but the army said it had freed 137 hostages. Yūsuf Akínpẹ̀lú reports for BBC News.

New Zealand said today it will dispatch defense personnel, helicopters, and a naval ship to the Solomon Islands to assist in a national election due next month. The deployment is part of a N.Z. $10.8 million (U.S. $6.48 million) support programme for the Solomon Islands Electoral Commission announced in January that will help transport election officers and materials around Pacific Island nations. Alasdair Pal reports for Reuters.


Poland demanded an explanation from Russia yesterday after one of its missiles briefly strayed into Polish airspace during a major missile attack on Ukraine, prompting Poland to activate F-16 fighter jets. According to Poland’s Armed Forces Operational Command, the object entered near Oserdow, a village near the border with Ukraine, and stayed in Polish airspace for 39 seconds. It was immediately clear if Russia intended for the missile to do so. Poland’s Defense Minister later said that Polish authorities monitored the attack and were in contact with Ukrainian counterparts, adding that NATO F-16s were activated as part of the strategic response. Vanessa Gera and Tony Hicks report for AP News. 


Former President Trump and his adult sons face a deadline today to pay or secure a bond for the $464 million judgment in Trump’s civil fraud case, which their lawyers have called a “practical impossibility.” If he cannot get a bond, New York Attorney General Letitia James could begin the process of seizing Trump’s prized assets. Aaron Katersky and Peter Charalambous report for ABC News.

Trump is expected back in court today for what is likely the final hearing before his New York hush money criminal case goes to trial. The case, which was initially scheduled to begin jury selection today, was adjourned for 30 days by Judge Juan Merchan after defense attorneys raised issues with federal prosecutors’ late production of potential evidence. Today’s hearing will resolve a recent defense motion related to the potential evidence and set a final trial date. Aaron Katersky and Peter Charalambous report for ABC News.